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Embarrassed Wankers Cough Up $1 Million in Bitcoin to Sextortinists

Embarrassed Wankers Cough Up $1 Million in Bitcoin to Sextortinists

Embarrassed Wankers Cough Up $1 Million in Bitcoin to Sextortinists’Sextortionists’ are raking it in by extorting bitcoin from porn watchers. | Source: ShutterstockBy CCN: Long ago the fear of going blind was drummed in people to prevent self-pleasure. Now the biggest fear seems to not being able to look your co-workers, friends and relatives straight in the eye if a compromising video of you lands in their hands. Scammers have realized this and are extorting bitcoin from victims and making a fortune out of it.According to an investigation conducted by cybersecurity firm Area 1, sextortionists have so far made $949,000. Initially reported by Fortune, the report claims that the average payout by victims of sextortion is 0.073 bitcoin (about $585).This Is How Sextortionists Plot to Steal Your BitcoinTypically, the email the scammers send their victims is formulaic. In the sextortion email the scammers will warn their selected targets that they possess videos of them watching porn. The fraudsters will claim to have obtained the video by installing malware on a porn website which the victim then unwittingly downloaded to their device.The scammers then say they recorded the victim engaging in masturbation via their webcam. They may also claim that they were able to obtain the victim’s social and professional contacts using the malware. The scammers then threaten to send the videos to all the victim’s contacts.At the bottom of the email, they will include an amount that they want sent to a bitcoin address. In most emails, the scammers will give their victims one day to make the payment.‘We Will Embarrass You’If not, they will threaten to send the video they claim to have recorded to co-workers and close relatives. They promise to delete the video if the payment is made.⚠️ Alert: #Sextortion emails like this one are still doing the rounds. We’ve had over 1,443 #phishing reports in May alone!Don’t reply or be pressured into paying: it only highlights that you’re vulnerable and you could be targeted again.Full story: https://t.co/WzC53I4F1y pic.twitter.com/Rf9u9ftUI4— Action Fraud (@actionfrauduk) May 14, 2019To convince their victims, the sextortionists will include the victim’s password in the blackmail email. However, more often than not, the scammers have obtained the victim’s password from an old data breach.The scammers have also demonstrated sophistication in evading filters set by the major email providers. Per Area 1, one of the techniques they employed includes pasting lines from famous writers in the email’s invisible text.The Area 1 report is corroborated by a previous investigation by U.K. cybersecurity firm Digital Shadows which in February disclosed that the average amount that sextortionists obtain from their victims is $540.  As of September 2018, the top Bitcoin address used by the scammers had received over 480 bitcoins.Highest-earning Bitcoin address belonging to sextortionists | Bitcoin Who’s WhoU.S. Leads the Way in Bitcoin Sextortion ScamAccording to Bitcoin Who’s Who, by September 2018 such sextortion scams had been reported in 42 countries. The United States had the lion’s share with 30 percent of the sextortion scams being reported there.The Sextortionists’ favorite countries | Source: Bitcoin Who’s WhoThe United Kingdom was also high on the list with 6 percent of the cases and recent reports indicate that it’s only growing. Just this month, UK’s national reporting center for cybercrime and fraud, Action Fraud, disclosed that more than 149 sextortion crime reports had been reported. Many more went unreported as victims, especially in these kinds of crimes, are usually too embarrassed to go public. About The AuthorMark EmemAfter words, numbers are my other love… mostly when they are going up and they have nothing to do with taxes or expenses. That makes green my favorite color!This article was edited by Samburaj Das.
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Moonday Mornings: Binance to resume deposits and withdrawals after $40M Bitcoin hack

It’s time for Moonday Mornings, Hard Fork’s wrap-up of the weekend’s top cryptocurrency and blockchain headlines. Here’s what happened. 1. Binance says it will resume deposits and withdrawals on its platform on Tuesday. The cryptocurrency exchange had suspended the functions following an attack in which hackers stole over $40 million worth of Bitcoin. 2. The…

Moonday Mornings: Binance to resume deposits and withdrawals after $40M Bitcoin hack

It’s time for Moonday Mornings, Hard Fork’s wrap-up of the weekend’s top cryptocurrency and blockchain headlines.

Here’s what happened.

1. Binance says it will resume deposits and withdrawals on its platform on Tuesday. The cryptocurrency exchange had suspended the functions following an attack in which hackers stole over $40 million worth of Bitcoin.

2. The figureheads of the fake cryptocurrency scheme, OneCoin, are being sued. Brother and sister duo, Konstantin Ignatov and Ruja Ignatova are facing a class action law suit for their involvement in the scam which was “based completely on lies and deceit,” ZDNet reports.

3. A Bitcoin BTC fueled ransomware attack hit the Baltimore City government last week. Despite being cleaned of the ransomware, hackers are allegedly still accessing the infected computers, ZeroHedge reports. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is now investigating the attack.

4. The creator of the Bitcoin treasure hunt Satoshi’s Treasure is claiming nearly 60,000 people are following the global challenge, CoinDesk reports. One player has already claimed the first prize, and didn’t even have to go anywhere to claim it.

And finally.

5. William Shatner is putting William Shatners on the blockchain. The former Star Trek actor is joining Mattereum, a legaltech firm, to document the authenticity of science collectibles and memorabilia from a range of franchises on the blockchain.

That’s another weekend’s headlines for you. Live long and prosper.

Published May 13, 2019 — 07:58 UTC

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Amazon granted patent for Bitcoin-style system to fight DDoS attacks

Cryptocurrency rumor mongers are likely to be dancing today as Amazon has successfully filed a patent for a Bitcoin-styled Proof-of-Work system. But don’t get ahead of yourself, it doesn’t look like the Seattle-based ecommerce giant will be accepting Bitcoin for payments. Despite first being filed in December 2016, Amazon’s patent application was granted earlier this…

Amazon granted patent for Bitcoin-style system to fight DDoS attacks

Cryptocurrency rumor mongers are likely to be dancing today as Amazon has successfully filed a patent for a Bitcoin-styled Proof-of-Work system. But don’t get ahead of yourself, it doesn’t look like the Seattle-based ecommerce giant will be accepting Bitcoin for payments.

Despite first being filed in December 2016, Amazon’s patent application was granted earlier this week and appears to outline a system that uses Proof-of-Work to prevent distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks.

“One way to mitigate against such attacks is to configure a service such that requests to the service incur some sort of expense, thereby providing a disincentive to participating in the attack,” the application reads.

Planting a Merkle Tree

Amazon proposes to use Merkle Trees to present a Proof-of-Work challenge and make it too costly for a series of computers to perform a DDoS attack.

But what’s a Merkle Tree? In short, Merkle Trees are cryptographic tools where blocks of data are manipulated to give them a unique identifier also known as a hash.

These hashes are then manipulated again to create a parent hash. Parent hashes are always a combination of two or more child hashes. It’s layers on layers of hashed data.

Since computing power is required to build a Merkle Tree, performing such hashes could get very costly in terms of time, electricity, and resources. In turn, this makes DDoS attacks economically unfeasible.

In the case of Amazon’s patent, imagine having to construct a Merkle Tree before you’re allowed to access a website hosted on one of its servers. To an individual the cost might be insignificant, but to an organization trying to carry out a DDoS attack – which might involve many hundreds of computers – it could become prohibitively expensive.

Amazon’s Merkle Tree

Merkle Trees are also used in Proof-of-Work blockchains like Bitcoin as part of its consensus mechanism. But for now that’s as close as Amazon will get to Bitcoin.

Indeed, with this news it seems Amazon is still of the “blockchain, not Bitcoin” mantra. Earlier this month, the web giant said that AT&T, Accenture, and Nestlé are all using its cloud-based blockchain tools.

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South African voters fear mobile political campaigns will steal their personal info

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